Author Topic: The write up of Shawn Cram's 2004 DK3 record  (Read 1224 times)

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Online homerwannabee

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The write up of Shawn Cram's 2004 DK3 record
« on: June 16, 2014, 02:46:25 PM »
It's been about 10 years now since Shawn Cram got his record.  And why not bring up the post about his record that was written by RTM all those years ago?  What I find most interesting is how he had a really strong 5 man start of what appears to be 789,100!(somehow Robert miscounts the deaths and claims 924,700).  I do feel it brings some insight into DK3 history.

My guess is Shawn's "Secret" tactic was sacrificing a man on the gray boards in order to use the Super spray to get past the other two boards.  Ironically enough, I believe he probably hurt is overall score using this tactic.

"Hello fellow gamers:

Twin Galaxies is proud to announce that Shawn Cram, who hails from Maine in the USA, has set a new world record on the arcade title "Donkey Kong 3" while playing "marathons mode" with a final score of 2,544,400 points !!

"Donkey Kong 3" ("aka "DK3" for short) was the follow-up to "Donkey Kong Junior", and follows the exploits of Stanley and his can of bug spray as he does battle with the inimitable "Donkey Kong" who sends down his hoards of insect minions to confound Stanley below. Meanwhile, Stanley valiantly tries to send "Donkey Kong" higher and higher up the screen via the vines he is clinging to, sometimes knocking down a powerful bug spray repellant that can make quick work of "Donkey Kong" and bring the wave to a satisfying end.

Like "Donkey Kong" and "Donkey Kong Junior", "DK3" features several different stages, each requiring a slightly different strategy. However "DK3" does not have a known "kill screen", meaning a stage where the game comes to a finite conclusion due to the programming. If a "kill screen" exists, it is further into the game than anyone, Shawn inclusive, has reached to date.

In his performance lasting 1 hour and 55 minutes and 52 seconds (1:55:52), Shawn reached level (43-2), meaning he completed 132 stages of game play (level 1 contains two screens while all thereafter contain 3 each) and died in stage 133. Incredible !! In setting this new world record, this the longest one of the three "Donkey Kong" series titles has been played in terms of the number of stages cleared, "Donkey Kong" being the second most with 117 stages by the "kill screen".

Shawn, and his equally talented brother Jason, have been hammering away at classic arcade titles, as of late, setting impressive new world records on titles such as "Zookeeper", "Congo Bongo" and now "Donkey Kong 3", and already have their sights set on new titles to conquer and add to their growing resume of world records on classic arcade titles. According to Twin Galaxies history, the "Zookeeper" world record was the first time ever that a gamer from the state of Maine was the world champion of an arcade title, and I strongly suspect that we have only seen the barest hint of the awesome game play performances yet to come from this duo of master class gamers.

I spoke to Shawn in person regarding his performance. He confirmed that like a few arcade classics such as "Galaga" and "Commando", "DK3" stops awarding extra men after a million points. And from watching the game for verification purposes, let me confirm that it does "roll over" at a million points !!

Here, below, is a recap of Shawn's performance. As per my discussion with Shawn, certain aspects of his game play will be kept "secret" so as not to reveal any hard earned tactics that he might have discovered through perhaps weeks and months of determined and diligent practice. Enjoy !!



Level 1 - 23,800 points (score at the end of stages "1-1" and "1-2"). Jason gets a "perfect" bonus on both stages. I think it's only fair to say that with the exception of fewer stages than you can count on one hand, Jason earned a "perfect" on almost all 132 stages completed !!

Level 2 - 70,600 points (score at the end of stages "2-1", "2-2" and "2-3). From this point on I will just indicate the score at the end of the level and any other important info.

Level 3 - 118,000
Level 4 - 165,400
Level 5 - 222,200
Level 6 - 277,100
Level 7 - 328,100

Jason reached the 15-minute mark, or rather 15:20, after completing stage (7-2) with a score of 315,000 points even. For tracking purposes, I will indicate to the nearest 15-minute interval what stage and score Jason has reached in my write-up)

Level 8 - 393,800
Level 9 - 455,600

Jason loses his 1st life at 418,200 points in stage (9-2)

Level 10 - 510,700
Level 11 - 577,500

Jason loses his 2nd life at 538,300 points in stage (11-2). From my review of his game play performance, the "-2" stages are the hardest !!

Level 12 - 640,700

Jason reached the 30-minute mark, or rather 30:27, at the completion of stage (12-3). Further, he lost his 3rd life at 609,800 in stage (12-2)

Level 13 - 695,700
Level 14 - 763,000

Jason loses his 3rd life at 723,800 points in stage (14-2)

Level 15 - 815,000

Jason loses his 4th life at 789,100 points in stage (15-2)

Level 16 - 866,900
Level 17 - 924,700

Jason loses his 5th life at 924,700 points in stage (17-1), his 1st loss in a stage other than "-2". I won't list when he loses his extra men from this point on unless it is unusual or important...I just thought it might be interesting to list when the first five lives were used considering how many titles have "Tournament Settings" which allow for just five lives only.

Level 18 - 996,800

Jason reaches the 45-minute mark by completing stage (18-1) at 45:36. Interestingly, he loses three (3) men back-to-back in stage (18-1) at 937,800 points, 938,200 points and 939,600 points.

Level 19 - 1,051,500

The million-point barrier is shattered at 47:36. Stage (19-3) proves to be the first genuinely tough "-3" stage for Jason this entire game...he finishes the stage with zero seconds left on the timer !!

Level 20 - 1,125,500
Level 21 - 1,188,500
Level 22 - 1,243,400
Level 23 - 1,319,800

The one-hour mark is passed during stage (23-2).

Level 24 - 1,374,600

For the first time in the game, "Donkey Kong" manages to climb down the vines far to take a swipe at poor Stanley !! Having never lasted long enough at the title to experience this first-hand, it was a big surprise to me !!

Level 25 - 1,448,200

This level is particularly tough. As with level 18, Jason loses three (3) lives on this level at 1,384,500 points, 1,391,400 points and 1,415,000 points.

Level 26 - 1,509,500
Level 27 - 1,563,300
Level 28 - 1,630,000

The 1:15 mark is passed after completion of stage (28-3) at approx 1:15:25 into the game.

Level 29 - 1,705,600
Level 30 - 1,766,400
Level 31 - 1,821,500
Level 32 - 1,893,600
Level 33 - 1,953,700

The 100th stage is cleared when Jason successfully completes stage (33-2) with a score of 1,938,700 points !!

Level 34 - 2,014,200

The 1:30 mark is passed slightly after completion of stage (34-1), which occurred at approx 1:29:48 into the game. Further, the two million-point barrier was shattered at the 1:31:22 mark.

Level 25 - 2,072,500
Level 36 - 2,133,900

At approx the 1:37 mark I hear in the background Shawn exclaiming "World Record...that's the world record !!"

Level 37 - 2,196,600

Shawn lost a life in stage (37-2) at 2,164,900 points and I noticed that his supply of extra lives had gone down by one. There were only 4 lives left in reserve.

Level 38 - 2,256,500

Another life is lost in stage (38-2) at 2,217,500 points at approx 1:40:50 into game play. Three (3) reserve lives remain.

Level 39 - 2,318,600

Another life is lost in stage (39-1) at 2,286,000 points at approx 1:43:25 into game play. Two (2) reserve lives remain.

Level 40 - 2,373,800
Level 41 - 2,442,600

Another life is lost in stage (41-2) at 2,407,500 points at approx 1:48:43 into game play. Only one (1) reserve life remains. The pressure is on !!

Level 42 - 2,498,700

Stage (43-1) - Shawn loses another life at 2,513,200 points, a hair over the 2.5M barrier at 1:53.31 into game play. One life remains.

Stage (43-2) - Shawn loses his last life in the "-2" stage at the 1:55:52 mark. All that remains is for Shawn to register his record score and take a well-deserved breather..



Most of Shawn's losses occurred on the "-2" stages, from his first to the last. The configuration of the playfield is effectively split into two sections. That, plus an enemy that pretty much homes in on the horizontal level that you are at makes this stage very difficult indeed.

Only once in the entire game did Shawn allow the timer to count down to zero, finishing the stage at the last possible instant. But due to the nature of the game, it is not feasible to categorize what the average timer remaining per stage was because of the effects of the "Super Sprayer" device that comes out every few stages. Suffice it to say that some stages are much harder without it's benefits.

On behalf of Twin Galaxies, we wish to congratulate Shawn Cram on a job well done. Well done !!

« Last Edit: June 16, 2014, 02:48:59 PM by homerwannabee »
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